Monday, November 28, 2011
No un-cola expected for PA lawmakers
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By Michael Hasch, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, Saturday, November 26, 2011
Fred Danchenko doesn't think it's fair that state legislators receive automatic cost-of-living pay increases — the latest boosts the average lawmaker's salary to $82,000 — when so many Pennsylvanians are out of work or have not seen a raise for some time.
BY JAN MURPHY AND CHARLES THOMPSON, The Patriot-News
Education news by Sarah Garland -
In Washington, D.C., one of the first places in the country to use value-added teacher ratings to fire teachers, teacher-union president Nathan Saunders likes to point to the following statistic as proof that the ratings are flawed: Ward 8, one of the poorest areas of the city, has only five percent of the teachers defined as effective under the new evaluation system known as IMPACT, but more than a quarter of the ineffective ones. Ward 3, encompassing some of the city's more affluent neighborhoods, has nearly a quarter of the best teachers, but only eight percent of the worst.
The discrepancy highlights an ongoing debate about the value-added test scores that an increasing number of states are using to evaluate teachers. Are the best, most experienced D.C. teachers concentrated in the wealthiest schools, while the worst are concentrated in the poorest schools? Or does the statistical model ignore the possibility that it's more difficult to teach a room full of impoverished children?
A Virginia company leading a national movement to replace classrooms with computers — in which children as young as 5 can learn at home at taxpayer expense — is facing a backlash from critics who are questioning its funding, quality and oversight.
K12 Inc. of Herndon has become the country's largest provider of full-time public virtual schools, upending the traditional American notion that learning occurs in a schoolhouse where students share the experience. In K12's virtual schools, learning is largely solitary, with lessons delivered online to a child who progresses at her own pace.
Published Online: November 23, 2011
Education Week By Ian Quillen
It's been a rough couple of months for the public image of K-12 virtual education.
Studies in Colorado and Minnesota have suggested that full-time online students in those states were struggling to match the achievement levels of their peers in brick-and-mortar schools. Articles in The New York Times have questioned not only the academic results for students in virtual schools, but also the propriety of business practices surrounding the use of public dollars for such programs.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011, Hilton Harrisburg Hotel
Co-sponsored by The Shippensburg University Teacher Education Department and Education Matters in the Cumberland Valley.
Use Education Voters PA website to contact your PA State Representatives today asking them to oppose taxpayer funded vouchers:
For more info/background - PSBA's Tuition Voucher Issue Page